If you are planning to sell products or services online, then you have come to the right place. To say, one can start transacting online with as little as a single Instagram account. But you have your eyes on something bigger.
You want to start an e-commerce firm and you intend to see it scale.
So, here we have put together a little guide about the technical know-how. This article is a how-to for the what-to’s in your head.
1. Register Your Domain
A domain name is an address where people can reach your site. It is what comes after the www. Technically, choosing a domain name is the first step towards starting your online business.
But let’s be real. There is a lot more groundwork to be laid before you can have a vague idea as to what you will call your website. You need to decide your business model, search for your competitors, and study the market in your niche.
Ask yourself the following questions:
What is the emotion that I want my product to create in people?
What is the emotion that the competitor’s domain name creates?
Is it ‘fun’, ‘serious’, ‘exciting’, ‘intriguing’, or ‘soothing’?
You want to make sure that your domain name is short and sweet, as well as very relevant to your product.
Typically, your domain name will cost somewhere between $15 – $25. But you can also get it along with your hosting package to get it cheap, and sometimes for free.
Some good domain registrars include,
2. Pick a Hosting Provider
Choosing the right Hosting Provider for you can be a daunting task. There is a plethora of providers out there, each offering compelling features at competitive rates. So, which do you choose?
Well, you want to choose one that offers the best services in your preferred type of hosting. Are you opting for Shared Hosting? Choose a provider that offers an affordable, user-friendly, and high-speed solution.
Are you opting for VPS Hosting? Go for one that provides higher technical freedom, higher security, and better performance. You can also opt for Managed WordPress or Dedicated Hosting.
3. Design Your Website
Your website’s design can be a make or break for your business’ success. A good UX (user experience) can do great things for your business, as it makes the user want to spend time on your website.
You don’t want to punish visitors for accessing your website with poor navigation and poor page response. Therefore, here’s a step where you can get ready to loosen your purse strings.
There are three ways to go about designing your website:
- Hire a team of designers and web developers
- Approach a digital agency
- Work with freelancers
Each of these options has its own merits. But remember, you want to make sure that you work closely with the designers.
So, we recommend going for an option that would give you maximum involvement in the creative process.
4. Advertise and Collaborate
The next step is to market your product. To do this, you can invest in Google AdWords, which is cited as the marketing medium with the highest percentage of conversions.
The next best option is to go for Affiliate Marketing. In this, you can find affiliate firms that promote your product and generate customers for you.
In turn, you give them a commission for each sale they help you make. A great affiliate firm to try is GrabOn, which is leading in India, and partners with over 1900+ brands to get them the sale they deserve.
Apart from that, you can also promote your product on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and other social channels by creating an account specifically for your business and creating target ads for your desired customer base.
Platforms like these give you a well-crafted solution wherein you can select the demographic you want to reach, and have your ads be circulated to them.
Therefore, with the option of curating your audience, you have a good chance of converting them into leads.
5. Integrate e-Commerce Store
Setting up an e-Commerce Store can be tricky. You need a shopping cart, a secure payment gateway, and so much more! But don’t worry. There are e-commerce platforms out there that you can leverage. These platforms will not only help you set up an e-commerce store on your own website but will also help you manage inventory sold on other online marketplaces like Amazon and eBay.
Some popular e-commerce platforms include Shopify, BigCommerce, and Wix. You may want to keep the traffic and scalability of your e-commerce store in mind while choosing a hosting provider as well.
For more information, refer to this article: 7 Things to keep in mind before choosing a hosting platform.
6. Add Fonts, Icons, and Images
To make your website more interactive, easy to understand, and user-friendly, you need to add fonts, icons, and images.
When it comes to fonts, less is more. Fancier fonts are harder to read in small sizes and do not support all alphabets. Fonts like Tisa, Abel, or Open Sans on the other hand are simple and will not kill the user’s attention.
While there are a lot of paid fonts out there, you can also download fonts for free using websites like DaFont, Font Squirrel, and The League of Moveable Type.
For icons too, fancy and flashy is a big no-no. The purpose of icons is to make it easier for users to browse through your website. So, standard icons will go a long way in making your website intuitive. You can find high-quality icons on Material Icons, Flaticon, Noun Project, etc.
Internet is a never-ending ocean of images. But not all of these are free of licenses and charges. So, websites that do offer free of cost images are a treasure. We suggest you make note of the following websites and keep them handy: Pexels, Unsplash, and the ISO Republic.
That brings us to the end of this article. Do you intend to chart down your business plan right away? Go ahead! We wish you all the luck!
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